Drucker on Why Managing for Today is FICTITIOUS

Hello Innovation Pioneers I continue to get struck by the distance between today and tomorrow.

I just read this in Peter Drucker’s classic — The Practice of Management

“There is one more major factor in every management problem, every decision, every action.  Management always has to consider both the present and the long-range future.  A management problem is not solved if immediate profits are purchased by endangering the long-range profitability, perhaps even the survival, of the company.  A management decision is irresponsible if it risks disaster this year for the sake of a grandiose future.  The all too common case of the management that produces great economic results as long as it runs the company but leaves behind nothing but a burned-out and rapidly sinking hulk is an example of irresponsible managerial action through failure to balance present and future.  The immediate “economic” results are actually fictitious and are achieve by paying out capital. In every case where present and future are NOT BOTH SATISFIED, where their requirements are not harmonized or at least balanced, capital, that is, wealth-producing resources, is endangered, damaged or destroyed.  The time dimension is inherent in management because management is concerned with decisions for action.  And action is always aimed at results in the future."

If there is no tomorrow in our thinking there is no change....there is no need to innovate... and there is no hope.

Investment in educating workers is a sign of an organization with a concern for the future.  We invest in education today to make for a better tomorrow.    A culture of learning creates an organization that works smarter.

What are you doing to learn more?

My friend  and mentor - Walter recently sent me the following.

Deming and education are not really goal oriented. They are both more journeys and not destinations. We used to ask Deming: "When will we catch the Japanese?" He would smile and say: "What makes you think they are standing still waiting for you?"

Progress is taking one step in the right direction and following it with another in that same direction. Speed is important only if you don't lose direction. All the speed in the world in the wrong direction is a total waste. Once you know how to walk you can learn to run but it's hard to do that in the reverse order.

 We can never know all we need to know... it's a never ending journey.   Constancy of Purpose is about focusing the learning journey in the right direction.
Everyone agrees that tomorrow will be different than today.  Everyone agrees that today's skills and systems won't work tomorrow.
Everyone agrees that today's products and services won't work tomorrow.
The question then is - are you leading yourself and your organization on the journey to prepare yourself for tomorrow - while also managing today.
From the shore of New London Bay
Prince Edward Island